We were invited by the UrbanXchanger programme, to work with local community based initiatives in two cities, Mexico City and Berlin. We explored new ways of approaching our practice as architects and searched for opportunities to transfer knowledge between places, projects, people. We engaged in a collective learning process.

We de­veloped a project  in Miravalle and another in Hellersdorf , both neighborhoods located in the periphery of Mexico City and Berlin.Learning from what already exists in Miravalle and Hellersdorf,  have lead us to new ways of seeing and understanding architecture not only as a physical con­struction but also as a social construction.

We have built up a dialogue between Miravalle and Hellersdorf, with its similarities and differences, as suggestions, echoes and provocations.

As a mirror of both places, this booklet conjoins scales and layers, obser­vations of the place, and actions that give the community insight into the potential uses of their public space.

It is about making the invisible more visible. This double reading opens the idea that small scale projects can produce a ripple-effect in the larger scale.

We have re-learned that going back to basics and understanding their own resources and essential needs (water and light) can really make a change in the perception people have of their own place.

For further information: http://www.urbanxchanger.com/

Location: Miravalle, Iztapalapa, Mexico City, Hellersdorf, Berlin, Alemania

Program: UrbanXchanger

Project: Rozana Montiel, Claudia Rodríguez, Daniel Jaramillo + SMAQ (Berlín)
Collaborators: Hortense Blanchard, Daniel Rivera
Year of construction: 2016